Description: Social welfare deliverer
What is good: Facilitation of help based on what the user needs
HQ Location and Country: Closed 2015
Operation locations: None Current

An organisation (closed in 2015) that was committed to delivering social work in a different, that is user centred way based on a relationship rather than a transaction.

How it shows

Help and Resources; Provision of help and resources to people based on what they need. Faciliates them looking after themselves. 

Characteristics

Good process; based on five core shifts in the approach to work:

  • From meeting needs to fostering capabilities
  • From targeted services to models open to all
  • From a financial focus to a resource focus
  • From centralised institutions to distributed networks
  • From individual solutions to social networks

Learning system; Using Ageing Circles as an example it started in Southwark, then developed prototypes in a number of different locations carrying out local scoping exercises to tailor the approach to different localities.

Wide engagement; Using Ageing Circle as an example, started by asking 250 people for input then broadened this out to over 20,000

Balanced measurement; Participle designed a simple, but effective measurement framework which consisted of 3 distinct parts: capability growth, outcomes and cost saving data. It had t measure outcomes because it was based in government and this contributed to its decision to close.

Caveats

Although the work was a success the organisation concluded that; "We have learnt that no that no matter how strong the will for change, or the power of the rhetoric behind a transformative approach, it will ultimately fail unless the metrics are aligned to the new era. The need to grow and develop people’s capabilities might be understood, yet if the success of a service remains determined on by system focused outcomes, rather than capabilities grown; or certain costs are saved rather than resources unlocked then that service will be forced to continue to deliver in old ways and deep meaningful change will not be realised."  

Reading between the lines it looks like the State managed to stifle something that could have worked and saved it money because it was structurall incapable of the changes needed.